ADDIS ABABA – The World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors have approved on Thursday a total of 82.6 million financial support to help Ethiopia mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
The East African will receive the fund in the form of 41.3 million US dollars grant and 41.3 million US dollars credit, according to the bank.
“Although Ethiopia has achieved significant gains in improving health outcomes and strengthening its health system, the COVID 19 outbreak is expected to challenge the nation’s public health preparedness and response systems and negatively impact the economy,” said Carolyn Turk, World Bank Country Director for Ethiopia.
World Bank’s COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project is designed to help Ethiopia develop counter measures to lessen the devastating effects of COVID-19.
“The project will provide much needed emergency funds to help Ethiopia to fill critical resource gaps in its public health emergency preparedness.”
It will support Ethiopia’s National Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19 by financing the procurement of medical supplies and equipment, building diagnostic capacity and training, improving the health screening of people entering into the country, and establishing quarantine, isolation and treatment centers.
It will also support communications and information outreach activities to encourage behavioral change, such as social distancing, handwashing and sanitation.
Furthermore, the project will help the country to reduce the potential impact of the epidemic on health systems, social services and economic activity.
The World Bank Group is rolling out a $14 billion fast-track package to strengthen the COVID-19 response in developing countries and shorten the time to recovery.
The immediate response includes financing, policy advice and technical assistance to help countries cope with the health and economic impacts of the pandemic.